Dumfries v Stewartry is always a hard fought game and this one was no different. After a gap of ten years the playing for the Jack Solley Shield was back as a pre-Six Nations appetiser for the opening game, Scotland v Ireland.
Park Farm was in good condition as Stewartry kicked off into the strong wind. The Blacks took the game to Dumfries with Austin, Broll and Kerr to the fore.
Dumfries were quick to hit back with the first lineout and a penalty award. The Saints were soon in the Stewartry 22 and from another line out won possession taking the play across the pitch and over for the opening score. The conversion was added.
Stewartry kept the pressure on and JP Thompson picked up from a scrum in front of the Dumfries posts to put prop Stuart Broll in for a try.
Carson added the points. Half time 7-7.
Stewartry changed props Amos for Cannon but it was Dumfries who took advantage of some poor Stewartry tackling and Dumfries were back in front.
Stewartry again hit back with Carson going down the touchline to score in the corner.
He then missed the kick. At a Stewartry scrum on the Saints 22, JP again picked up, fed Carson and Lewis Young scored his first ever Stewartry try.
The easy kick was missed. 12-17.
With ten minutes left Dumfries upped the pressure a last ditch Milligan tackle could not stop the third try for the Saints with only minutes to go.
Stewartry’s two Thomson’s combined to win a penalty which Carson drilled between the posts to give the Blacks the lead for a second time.
The game finished with Dumfries parked on the Stewartry line a cross field kick from left to right bounced into the Saints wingers arms as he crashed over for the winning score. 22.-20 and Dumfries had retained the Jack Solley Shield for a fourth time in a row in a most entertaining hard fought local derby.